Please go to Palm Springs. There’s no glitz here.
But if you like it very laid-back, getting dusty and being outdoors in the sun to hike or lounge, Borrego Springs could fit the bill.
Where I stayed, the Borrego Springs Motel, is a good base to explore the low desert. Modern, clean, spartan, non-pretentious, comfortable. From my stay, 1/14/2014 –
Borrego is Spanish for sheep, but Borrego is also a surname I see in the SW. Plants, plants….Compass Barrel / Ferocactus cylindraceaus, doing what it’s named after, pointing to the south. Less plant surface is exposed to their endless sun that way.
I do like the Nevada form of that barrel more, though. I posted on it – here. In Las Vegas, some call them “Nevada Fire Barrel”. Same species, but the higher and more northerly, 4 season Mojave Desert.
Borrego Springs has minimal, but basic, good eating and some shopping. Even an art gallery where I reverted to my favorite images of ocotillos, mirages, roadrunners, skulls, jagged mountains…
If you plan well, you can even pick up some gastrnomic provisions back in San Diego at places like Trader Joe’s, though some may be available in town. It’s important to be stocked up to maximize enjoyment of the incredible desert air, and being around few but friendly people in an old-time desert oasis.
Except May through October – this motel is closed then, and many people leave the valley, since summer there is beyond cruel.
But on a “winter” morning, it’s divine. If only I had $10 for each license plate I saw about town that day, from places like Oregon, Minnesota, Illinois, or Canada. I wonder why so many? :-)
Borrego is even listed at #11 among “America’s Coolest Desert Towns” – try this.